Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)

Mental Health First Aid

bullet Would you know what to do if someone you knew was experiencing a mental health crisis?

bullet Would you recognise the signs of a potential Mental Health concern in yourself or others?

bullet Would you know where to turn for help and effective treatment for a Mental Health concern?


  • Mental Health problems are very common. In any one year about one in five adult Australians experiences a common mental health problem.
  • The most common and disabling mental health problems are depression, anxiety disorders and psychotic disorders.
  • Many people suffer a mental illness for a long time before they seek help.
  • Alcohol and other drug problems frequently occur with depression, anxiety and psychosis.

Mental Health First Aid is the initial help given to someone experiencing a mental health problem before professional health is sought.

MHFA is an internationally recognised course developed by the Centre for Mental Health Research at the ANU. This Course is designed to improve Mental Health Literacy and provide participants with skills and information that will enable them to respond effectively and appropriately to persons who may be developing mental illness or experiencing a mental health crisis. Participants will learn the signs and symptoms of: Depression, Anxiety Disorders, Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder. They will also learn where and how to get help and what sort of help has been shown by research to be effective.

This is a 12 hour course which consists of 4 learning modules each lasting 3 hours. The delivery format is flexible.

An Award Winning International Program

  • The Australian and New Zealand Mental Health Services GOLD Achievement Award, 2003 & 2007
  • The Australian National University Vice Chancellor’s Award for Community Outreach, 2004
  • Victorian Public Health Award for Program Innovation, 2006
  • Suicide Prevention Australia National ‘LiFe’ Award – Healthy Communities Category, 2007
  • Excellence in Mental Health Education Award - National Council for Behavioral Health Care, USA, 2008.